Fiat CEO pulls the plug on second generation 124

Despite reviving the 124 Spider moniker four years ago as the spiritual successor to the 1960s Sport Spider and indeed the Barchetta that ended production in 2005, Fiat-Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) has confirmed that a second generation model won’t materialise anytime soon.

According to Britain’s Autocar, FCA Chief Marketing Officer and Fiat CEO, Olivier François, stated that the 124 and its Abarth sibling, both based on the current Mazda MX-5 but fitted with Fiat’s 1.4-litre turbocharged engine, have “no legitimacy” and are not considered important for the marque’s future plans.

Earlier this year, he told the publication that, “the 124 market is a niche one. It is profitable business for us – but only because of the joint venture. It was an opportunity and we took it. It makes money and it adds a certain cool factor.

“But I accept that such a car may not be key to the future of the brand. It is not what I’d call a pure, absolute Fiat, but for now, it remains an interesting opportunity”.

While sales of the 124 and Abarth ended in the United Kingdom back in March, both will continue to be offered in Europe, the United States and, for now, South Africa, where only the Abarth version is sold priced from R605 900 with the more luxurious Turismo commanding a sticker of R655 900.

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